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Baker's Dozen

13 Reasons Why I Can't Pick My 13 Favourite Records, By Drew Daniel
The Quietus , September 25th, 2014 06:41

When we asked Drew Daniel of Matmos and The Soft Pink Truth for his Baker's Dozen, he refused - and with good reasons. Thirteen of them, to be precise. Here Daniel presents them in an essay titled A Rant Against The Quantification Of Aesthetics. All photographs courtesy of Drew Daniel

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Reason Five: It Is Dishonest To Ignore Friends, And Creepy To Rank Them.
Do you remember MySpace? Do you remember the "Top 8" feature, in which you had to select your favourite eight friends? Do you remember the queasy cruelty of that process, however minuscule its low stakes? Why would picking your favourite recordings be any less awkward? If you answer, "Duh, because recordings aren't people whose feelings can be hurt", then you haven't noticed that musicians tend to be friends with other musicians, and often collaborate with or are influenced by people who turn into friends and bandmates. If I made a list of my favourite records and just didn't include albums by my friends at all, that would be dishonest and false. I would be acting as if records by friends weren't among my favourite records. But by that same token, the very prospect of putting some on the list and some off the list is repugnant to me. Such emotional complexity doesn't yield well to the scarcity logic in which there are only 13 spaces at the table. Quantifying your love and connection to your friends in public is creepy.


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